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Cut & Paste: St. Louis' LGBTQ film festival marks 10 years of history and 'magic'

This is the marketing image for "The Boys in the Band," released in 1970. It is one of two classic films to be shown in this year's QFest.
Provided | Cinema St. Louis
"The Boys in the Band," released in 1970, is one of two classic films to be shown in this year's QFest.

When St. Louis' QFest of filmsofficially launched, people in the LGBTQ community were barred from institutions ranging from the military service to marriage.

A decade later, LGBTQ citizens can both serve and marry.  The 10th annual festival, which opens March 29, includes a dozen films that reflect a restricted past and progressive present.

The Cinema St. Louis festival at .Zack in Grand Center includes modern fare such as "Lovesong" starring Riley Keough and Jena Malone, and classics, including 1970s' "The Boys in the Band."

In our latest Cut & Paste podcast, we talk with QFest organizer Chris Clark about the history and magic of the festival, and some of its more memorable offerings during the past decade.

Highlights from the show:

  • Clark on the value of films like “But I’m a Cheerleader” that parody serious issues like conversion therapy: “None of us can or could have survived without finding some humor in some things even when it was dark.”

  • About films with "coming out" themes: “I like those kind of stories; it kind of reminds me of a young ‘me.’”

  • On how films about the transgender experience have evolved: “Now there are transgender filmmakers, not just clumsy films about what people with no real-life experience thought it was like to be that way.”

Cut & Paste

Look for new Cut & Paste (#cutpastestl) podcastsevery few weeks on our website. You can also view all previous podcasts focusing on a diverse collection of visual and performing artists, and subscribe to Cut & Paste through this link.

The podcast is sponsored by SPACE Architecture + Design.

Follow Willis and Nancy on Twitter: @WillisRArnoldand @NancyFowlerSTL

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Nancy is a veteran journalist whose career spans television, radio, print and online media. Her passions include the arts and social justice, and she particularly delights in the stories of people living and working in that intersection.